In a few months, China will have more 5G sites than the entire western world.  "Michael Gao Wenhao of ZTE told China Daily that by Oct 1, China Mobile, China Unicom and China Telecom will each deploy 30,000 to 50,000 base stations in some 40 cities." Alex Cheng of China Mobile confirmed the story.

From other sources, I know that China will very rapidly go first to 1,000,000 bases and after that to 2,000,000. 90%+ of the country will soon be covered. The Politburo has decided that a great Internet will help the economy. Minister Miao Wei told the companies to do it.

No one should be surprised by the size of the rollout. In January, I reported the Nomura estimate that China will have 172,000 sites in 2019.

Deployment is now well begun and set to accelerate in June. This is confirmed by the volume of components being shipped to China.

Ericsson, Huawei, and ZTE are the suppliers. By informal government mandate, Ericsson and Nokia would each get about 10% of the orders, part of a political deal reached with the EU a few years ago. Huawei and ZTE have orders for 100,000 radios in hand.

Nokia CEO Rajeev Suri told investors he decided not to participate because the prices would be too low. That Nokia gave up on the enormous China contract was startling, leading to speculation that Suri's true path forward was to sell the company to either Ericsson or Samsung. There is no confirmation that is the actual plan.

The networks will all be 2.5 GHz to 4.9 GHz midband. The likely real speeds will be 100-500 megabits down, with a gigabit peak widely advertised. China Mobile has particularly valuable spectrum at 2.5 GHz, with better reach than the 3.5 GHz the other two carriers will be using.

Google news does not have any U.S. or European coverage yet, but I have multiple sources.

dave ask

Newsfeed

Vivo is selling new the iQOO 5G premium quality phone for US$536.

Lei Jun Xiaomi "5G to have explosive growth starting from Q2 2020"5G to have explosive growth starting from Q2 2020" I say sooner

Verizon CEO Ronan Dunne: >1/2 VZ 5G "will approximate to a good 4G service" Midband in "low hundreds" Mbps

CFO John Stephens says AT&T is going to cut capex soon.

Bharti in India has lost 45M customers who did not want to pay the minimum USS2/month. It's shutting down 3G to free some spectrum for 4G. It is cutting capex, dangerous when the 12 gigabytes/month of use continues to rise.

Huawei in 16 days sold 1,000,000 5G Mate 20s.  

China has over 50,000 upgraded base stations and may have more than 200,000 by yearend 2019. The growth is astonishing and about to accelerate. China will have more 5G than North America and Europe combined for several years.

5G phone prices are down to $580 in China from Oppo. Headed under $300 in 2020 and driving demand.

No one believed me when I wrote in May, 90% of Huawei U.S. purchases can be rapidly replaced and that Huawei would survive and thrive. Financial results are in, with 23% growth and increased phone sales. It is spending $17B on research in 2019, up > 10%. 

5G phones spotted from Sharp and Sony

NTT DOCOMO will begin "pre-commercial service Sept 20 with over 100 live bases. Officially, the commercial start is 2020.

 More newsfeed

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Welcome  1,800,000 Koreans bought 5G in the first four months. The demand is there, and most of the technology works. Meanwhile, the hype is unreal. Time for reporting closer to the truth.

The estimates you hear about 5G costs are wildly exaggerated. Verizon is building the most advanced wireless network while reducing capex. Deutsche Telekom and Orange/France Telecom also confirm they won't raise capex.

Massive MIMO in either 4G or "5G" can increase capacity 3X to 7X, including putting 2.3 GHz to 4.2 GHz to use. Carrier Aggregation, 256 QAM, and other tools double and triple that. Verizon sees cost/bit dropping 40% per year.

Cisco & others see traffic growth slowing to 30%/year or less.  I infer overcapacity almost everywhere.  

Believe it or not, 80+% of 5G (mid-band) for several years will be slower than good 4G, which is more developed.